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Why aren't we on top of COVID testing and turnaround times yet?

In Montana, the volume of tests since early August has regularly exceeded the state lab's capacity, resulting in wait times that can last up to seven days.


October 27, 2021

In one recent week, a New Yorker got a free COVID-19 test in a jiffy, with results the next day, while a Coloradan had to shell out $50 for a test two cities from her hometown after a frantic round of pharmacy-hopping. A Montanan drove an hour each way to get a test, wondering if, this time, it would again take five days to get results.

While COVID testing is much easier to come by than it was early in the pandemic, the ability to get a test - and timely results - can vary widely nationwide. A fragmented testing system, complicated logistics, technician burnout and squirrelly spikes in dem...

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